Women’s Soccer United very kindly asked me to write a little blog all about my experience in the lead up to the Olympics. It seems pretty surreal to be able to say the Olympics and to think its only just around the corner. It is such a massive honour to be part of the Women’s Team GB football team, considering this team was based on players being selected from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.
I was both nervous and excited when we all meet up on the 8th July at Loughborough University for our kitting out. I can’t quite put into words what this day was like to be honest, it was literally crazy. We went in groups of 6 over to the kitting out building and watched a short video from Sir Clive Woodward, Andy Hunt all about the kitting out experience. I was covered in goosebumps watching it. :D. (imagine what i will be like when it all starts. Haha) So then we were off upstairs to Next where we were trying on our suits, opening and closing ceremony outfits and basically being really girlie trying on different outfits. :D. The assistants were lovely and so helpful and they definitely aided to my overall experience and made me feel really comfortable. The clothes were amazing as well, they all fitted really well and it was awesome to see all the little touches they had put on everything to make them so special and ‘olympicie.’ (if thats a word?)
It was then downstairs to the Adidas part of the kitting out, where literally Adidas ‘throws up’ on you. ;). There were six sections which you move through trying on different pieces of clothing with your lovely assistant, these were footwear, podium (hoping), leisure wear, and training kit. The pieces of clothing were really cool and seeing that Stella McCartney had worked with Adidas to produce all the kit, well that’s pretty damn crazy. We then went through into another room where we tried on our playing kit, (the kits awesome and its a bit girlie which is a great touch). Here we got a chance to be a bit crazy and dress up and go into a lil photo booth they had. It was really fun to be a bit eccentric and just have a laugh, Steph Houghton and I had probably too much fun taking photo’s. :D.
I not really sure how to some up the ‘kitting out’ day to be quite honest with you, it was just an unbelievable 3 / 4 hours and a somewhat whirlwind. Its weird to think a week has passed since it all happened. You should see how much kit we have… so lucky.
Our base for the week was Champneys Springs, which was a beautiful location, we had everything we needed within the hotel, with even our training pitch being a 2 minute walk at the back of the hotel. It was great to be together with the team and start training together. Our first session was a team building one with blind folds and games etc, it was really fun and gave us all a chance to have a bit of a laugh and get to know each other a little better. Throughout the week we trained hard but also had time relax and use some of the facilities at the hotel, of which they had a great spa, with a swimming pool, sauna, jacuzzi and a steam room. :D.
When we had an afternoon off, we headed out for some team building at Tank Mania, where we all dressed up in Camouflage, with war paint and helmets. (it would be rude not to.) Hehe. I think i perhaps over done it on the paint – I blame my roomie Steph Houghton for that, I regret saying yes to a beard and mustache now. Lol. Anyhow…it was a great day out where we got to ride in tanks one was an ‘on road’ one where we went along country roads – i don’t think the people driving behind us appreciated it nor us all waving at them. Haha. We then ‘jumped’ into another tank, which would drive through all the mud and up and down humps etc. I’m not sure how many people are meant to fit in a tank but this was a little tight. Lol. Jill Scott and I were at the front standing and getting crushed everytime we went over a bump or basically moved to be honest. Lol. We went round the course twice, i thought i was going to cry when he started going round the second time… Haha. Rachel Brown was the hero though and picked Jill and I up and moved us to the middle. We were literally crying with laughter at how crazy it was… this probably isn’t the best explanation but we thought it was hilarious. :D. It was great to be doing something a bit different on our afternoon out and I had a very funny time.
On Sunday afternoon we had a friendly behind closed doors match against South Africa, whereby it was a chance to try and implement what we have been doing in training and put it onto the pitch. :). We won 3v1 with Kim Little, Rachel Yankey and Karen Carney scoring, it was great to be playing as part of Team GB, it was pretty cool. :D.
Now as i’m writing this we are driving down (i’m not driving…lol) in a coach to the “Olympic Village” for our orientation for the day / night. I can’t really get my head around everything we have done still and now we are going to the “Olympic Village.” WOW. This is absolutely mental and i definitely feel ridiculously proud to be part of Team GB women’s football. (By the way it looks awesome driving past it and to it… mouth open moment for sure and massive smile on my face… is this really happening? please).
Next we are heading to Middlesborough to prepare for our game against Sweden, which is a double header with the GB men’s football team. (how cool is that?) It would be great to get as much support down for Team GB as possible on Friday for the matches.
I think i have probably rambled for wayyyyyyyyyy to long…but i will keep you all updated about our time in Middlesborough and our preparation for the start of the Olympics against NZ… OMG.
© Ellen White / WomensSoccerUnited.com